By Richard Clarke
Only three players have the capability to leave Arsenal in the near future according to Arsène Wenger, no matter what happens in the Boardroom.
The departure of David Dein as vice-chairman on Wednesday has led to a frenzy of press speculation. Reports this morning suggest certain players were likely to leave. But, speaking at his press conference on Friday, the manager re-iterated his belief that this season's squad would be virtually identical to the one next term.
"We have no basic situation where players would be free to transfer," he said. "That is apart from Jens Lehmann, who of course has his own destiny in his hands, and Julio Baptista. But apart from that, all the other players are under contract. The only other one who can move out is Mathieu Flamini, but that is it. We have only three players where they have a situation to decide about."
Wenger went on to say that the players' feelings over Mr Dein's departure mirrored his own - taken aback yet still determined.
"The players are surprised," he said. "It was a big shock for them as well. But it is part of our strength to live with that.
"The players as well feel we have built something together with many, many young players, and they will want to go to the end of it."Copyright 2014 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source 20 Apr 2007